Saturday, July 5, 2008

Basic Pie Crust

I'm posting the pie crust recipe I emailed out to you all a while back for even easier reference. I've gotten good feedback on this recipe, so hopefully it's the definitive one.

This recipe makes one crust (bottom or top), so double it for a two-crust pie. Remember that the amount of water you'll need depends on the protein content of your flour and the ambient humidity. Try to keep your ingredients cold and work quickly. Crust can be frozen and thawed for use as needed--just make sure to wrap it thoroughly.

1 1/3 c. all-purpose flour
6 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. shortening or lard
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
~1/3 c. ice water + 1 tsp. white vinegar

Measure the butter and shortening and place them in the freezer while you work.

Measure the flour, salt, and sugar and fluff together with a fork.

Take the fat out of the freezer and cut into small chunks. Mix in using your fingers so that the fat pieces become coated in flour and then start pulling them into smaller pieces. Stop when you have a mixture of sizes, the largest the size of chickpeas and the smallest like coarse sand.

Pour ice water in while you mix (this is easiest with an assistant), until the dough just holds together when you squish it into a ball. Add about 1-2 more tsp. of water until the dough seems workable. You want to add a minimum of water and keep the dough fairly stiff, but you don't want it to be crumbly or it will be a nightmare later. Try for something that's not as homogeneous as Play-Doh in texture, but that's almost as workable.

Turn the dough onto a floured board and knead 3-4 times until it becomes smooth and coherent. If it is too dry, wet fingers. If too wet, knead in more flour.

If you doubled the recipe for a 2-crust pie, divide the dough into two pieces, one slightly larger than the other. Flatten into 3/4" thick disk(s) and wrap tightly in plastic. Refrigerate for at least one hour (ideally several). Dough can be frozen at this point.

Roll out the dough, using a floured board and rolling pin. The dough should be pliable enough that you can wrap it around the rolling pin or fold it up and move it over to your pie pan. If it breaks apart, you should add more water next time. If it sticks to the counter, you should use less water. Good luck! :)

Also, I don't have any pictures using this recipe that I haven't already posted, so here are some cute photos of baby raccoons from our backyard: cute. You little shits had better not start eating our garbage!

They're all puffed up trying to look big and scary. It didn't work.


super lotto numbers said...

Thanks. Im Inspired again.

Marjorie Magidow Schalles said...

Awwww...I hope you made some wee pies for the raccoons!